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Apr 13, 2014 - 06:42 AM
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Todd Gilliland Finishes Second In Lmsc Debut Young Driver Impressive In Charge
Posted by: newsla on Apr 13, 2014 - 06:36 AM
Todd Gilliland Finishes Second In Lmsc Debut Young Driver Impressive In Charge To Front At Ace

Thirteen-year-old Todd Gilliland turned heads in his late-model stock car (LMSC) debut Friday night at Ace Speedway in Altamahaw, N.C., finishing second after charging through the field to challenge for the win in his No. 98 Ford.


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The eighth-grader from Sherrills Ford, N.C., started the 75-lap race in eighth but fell back to 14th in the opening laps. After getting into a rhythm on the 4/10-mile track, he started his surge to the front.

Halfway through the event, he was back in the top 10. Logging faster lap times than any other car on the track, Gilliland pushed his way into the top 5 and then into the top 3 by Lap 52.

With 15 laps to go, he was just a few car lengths behind the leader and challenging for the win. With a few more laps, Gilliland might have pulled off the upset in his LMSC debut, but took the checkered flag as runner-up.

The teenager also ran the 40-lap Limited Late Model race at Ace a short time later, earning another second-place finish. The son of Sprint Cup Series driver David Gilliland felt good about his performance in both events.

"I'm really happy with how I did," said the younger Gilliland. "In the first race, I was mad that I fell back so far, but my car was really fast so I was able to get back up to the front pretty good.

"I'm just really thankful for all the help my mom and dad and Chris (crew chief Chris Lawson) have given me. This is what I really want to do and it's been awesome."

Gilliland also has support from Norfleet Developments, Country Chevrolet, Eibach Springs, Performance Racing Warehouse and Gear Tech.

The driver now has three straight runner-up finishes in his fledgling stock-car career. He also finished second in a Limited Late Model event at Myrtle Beach (S.C.) Speedway in November, in what was just his third race in a stock car.

The teen is the third generation of Gilliland racers, following his father, David, and grandfather, Butch, who also competed in the Sprint Cup Series.

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